Area 23's Healthcare Agency of the Year win was four years in the making

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Four years ago, the leadership of the FCB Health network — including FCB Health chief creative officer Rich Levy, Area 23 managing director and executive creative director Tim Hawkey, and FCB worldwide CEO Carter Murray — sat on the roof of the Five Seas Hotel after finding out that the work they submitted had been shut out at the first year of Lions Health.

They put their heads together, worked out a five-year plan, and this year Christmas came early. Area 23, an FCB Health agency, was named Healthcare Agency of the Year on Saturday, it won two Glass Lions on Monday, and by Wednesday morning in Cannes the FCB Health network's Lions tally had topped 9 and about 14 pieces of work had been shortlisted in the festival.

See also: Lions Health jury declines to award a pharma Grand Prix

“This is a proof point,” said Levy. “Celebrating healthcare work in the regular festival helps everyone's work elevate.”

FCB Health and McCann Health, both owned by Interpublic Group, created the most noise among healthcare advertising networks at this year's Cannes Lions Health International Festival of Creativity. McCann Health took home multiple gold Lions in the pharma category for Immunity Charm, a campaign aimed at improving childhood vaccination rates in Afghanistan, and ended up being the most-awarded campaign ever at Lions Health, according to McCann Health.

The FCB Health network's awards tally so far include seven medals in the health and wellness category, three in pharma, and two Glass Lions. Area 23, an FCB Health company, won big with a campaign for the iT-Bra, a medical device women can place in their bras to detect breast cancer marked by abnormalities. The device is marketed by Cyrcadia Health, a Reno, Nevada-based company.

See also: Lions Health: The 2017 pharma winners

The company began worked with Area 23 in mid-2016, and in the early days of the client-agency relationship they factored in a Cannes Lion as part of Cyrcadia's marketing strategy as well its funding strategy.

“The whole purpose of Lions Health is life-changing creativity,” Levy said.

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